1.02.2011

Herbie's Love Bug


So I got ahold of an old plastic car that is perfect puppet-size, and decided to add a scene of Herbie driving. I just couldn't pass up the opportunity. As soon as I plopped Herbie-pup into the driver's seat, I instantly had driving scenes from Psycho playing in my head...


First I sawed off the solid plastic windshield using an exacto sawblade.

Next I primed the whole thing with a glossy black spray paint.


Next, I taped off the black areas near the bumper and sprayed that with a chrome spray paint. Then came the new windshield, which I cut from the plastic box on one of Roman's Christmas toys. I trimmed it to shape and attached it with superglue, and added a couple of strips of sticky foam, painted silver, to line the windshield. I used the same silver paint to cover the headlights.

Next came the wipers, made of thinly cut balsa wood, and the side rearview mirrors, which are just wooden beads glued to a piece of wire and stuck in a wad of clay which was stuck to the car, all attached with superglue and painted silver and black. The driving scene will be shot solely from the front, so I didn't need to worry about trimming the bead flat or creating an actual rearview mirror.

Lastly, I added an interior rearview mirror made of clay and wire, a fleur-de-lis hood ornament, and a couple of strips of shiny chrome tape to catch the light better at the top and bottom of the windshield. I also lightly painted the windshield with a thinned out white acrylic paint to get the outline of the wipers.

The light of the headlights will be done in post using ParticleIllusion, and the illusion of driving will be achieved by passing a light, frame-by-frame, overhead from front to back, reflected in the hood and chrome bits. I may also add an ankh hanging from a chain on the rearview mirror which can be animated slightly swaying to show motion. I may do a quickie little animation test this week...